Wrong Side of the Blanket

He passes colder than the ghost of my enemy
I declare his sin to the world
In every expression
Every bowed word
I wear his proud chin
His cold demeanour
With a smile
But not so well disguised that he does not see
The glitter of malice in mine eyes
The half remembered tempted
Curve of my breast
The swelling of soft cheeks
A fickle taste of the silver spoon

Ah Peter wouldst thou deny me thrice?
With yet no cock to crow
But chickens in the yard
Declaring thus, her!
His real daughter
Evil countenance in silk stockings
Lips less the peach and more the tarter
Hands more of linen than of lace

‘Forgive me Father for I have sinned’
I wished him dead
And the whole world with him
For a sack full of cloth and ashes
And a nun’s habit
Oh I know I should accept
Like mother who
Took his cold kisses
His quizzing lizard gaze
For love
That daughter, his
Sleeps late, while I
Build the fire in the grate
I bathe her pallid skin
In rose water

How her nose would twist at coal-tar
The rough end of the blunt spoon
That dragged me kicking from the womb
Landing in such filth and blood
As would never come off
Ah but I will dance delicate jig yet
On a fine mahogany box
For my basket is laced with more than enough
And all for my ladies comfort

Again I'm looking for feedback, more coursework!! This was inspired by a picture of a young servant who had a quiet dignity and a sophistication that belied her apparent station, so I invented a history, comments on lucidity and structure would be greatly apreciated werther posative or negative-Please pretty please!


Blogger iamnasra said...

I have to come nack and have good read...

9:30 PM  
Blogger Nicole Braganza said...

Perfectly beautiful imagery in this:

"The half remembered tempted
Curve of my breast
The swelling of soft cheeks
A fickle taste of the silver spoon"

I really like the images used to suggest the hypocricy. And the poem builds momentum later...theres this distaste in the last stanza

"Landing in such filth and blood
As would never come off.."

You must have written this poem in some mad poetic frenzy...or maybe not, maybe you spent a lot of time on it because the rhythms are so well controlled at the same time!?

Somehow, for some unfathomable reason I felt the same way as I did when reading parts of Macbeth, when reading your poem.

2:01 PM  
Blogger cocaine jesus said...

this is a staggering, wonderful piece. so full of rich and creamy lines. and with a flourish that shakespeare would have envied.

11:43 AM  
Blogger Roger Stevens said...

Hi Sue

Yes, I've been around, just very busy. Good to know you've been looking out for me and keeping half an eye on my blog.

Comments for this poem -

Well, first of all I really like it. I like the rhythm, internal rhymes and the structure and overall the poems works really well. I'd consider NOT using the archaic language, the thees and mines etc. I understand why you did - but it always feels a bit contrived to me - almost anateurish - especially for a grown-up poem. Also I love some of the phrases - less peach/more the tarter, bowed word and blunt spoon. But be wary of using cliches such as proud chin, curve of breast and pallid skin.
Hope that helps.

The last poem is brilliant. Is it REALLY yours? It just hits the spot. It's a winner for any anthology.

I too am working on something for Radio 7. Some programmes with Floella Benjamin (remember her?)for young children based on nursery rhymes.

What fun we have.

Hope you're enjoying the break.


9:45 AM  
Blogger Sue hardy-Dawson said...

Thank-you for the great comments, particularly the constructive critisim (just what I wanted Roger thanks).

No Nicole I haven't been abducted by aliens, just course-work but I'm really enjoying this course so it's not been so bad in a boarderline obsessive compulsive kind of way. I've started writing a collection of short horror stories (for adults) and I'm enjoying that too.

CJ can't wait to catch up on Fircum Swarberry over the holls.

So glad you like the other poem Roger but it hasn't found a home yet even though children love it, the vaguries of the publishing world I expect.

4:45 PM  

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